Officials in the Department of Health are pushing for a review of the key laws governing food safety, after a listeria outbreak exposed shortcomings in their powers to obtain potentially life-saving information from companies and private laboratories. A department spokesman, Popo Maja, said on Monday a lack of co-operation by the industry had hindered the government’s attempts to trace the source of the world’s worst listeria outbreak, which began more than a year ago. A total of 948 laboratory-confirmed cases and 180 deaths were recorded from January 2017 to March 2. The National Institute for Communicable Diseases eventually traced the strain of Listeria monocytogenes responsible for 90% of the cases to polony made in Tiger Brands’s Enterprise Foods factory in Polokwane. Polony products containing a different strain of the deadly bacteria were also traced to Enterprise Foods’s Germiston factory and to RCL Foods’s Wolwehoek processing plant. Officials want to revise the Foodstuffs,...

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